With the recent Colorado Springs hail damage, including areas of Fountain, Stratmoor, and Security-Widefield, it is important to get a licensed contractor that will fix your roof right. It can be hard to know if your contractor is legitimate. There are a variety of scams individuals or companies will do to get your money and run while doing shoddy work – or no work at all! But there is another line for Coloradans to follow when getting their roof repaired or replaced: having their insurance deductible waived.
This is an issue that comes up often. Whether your deductible is $500 or $2000, chances are the homeowner is hoping to avoid pulling money out of pocket their when emergencies happen. But as of 2012, roofing contractors cannot legally waive the deductible
In 2012, Governor Hickenlooper signed SB38. SB38, in easy terms, prevents a roofing contractor from paying, waiving, or issuing the rebate of a deductible to the property owner – or advertising/promising to do so. This changed how several practices between roofing businesses and insurances were handled. Before, homeowners were given the money by their insurance – with the deductible taken out. This allowed the homeowner to do what they wanted with the money, keeping in mind that they could not claim it again. If someone were to claim the insurance on their badly damaged roof but turned around and used the money to fix up their cars, they would eventually have to pay for the roof out of their pocket.
Receiving payment for repairs is different now. Insurance policies tend to carry the Replacement Cost Value. This means that instead of receiving one lump sum for the work meant to be completed, the money for replacing a roof comes in separate checks. When the homeowner files a claim and the adjuster visits, they will determine the cost of repairs. Then they will take out the deductible, but they also take out depreciation from the estimate. So, the insured gets less money, and the depreciation value will only be paid to the mortgage company when a contractor gives an invoice of $10,000 or more.
Unfortunately, dropping the deductible is a common scam for roofing companies to pull. They’ll offer to do your roof at no cost - but is very often illegal. Instead of the homeowner paying for the roof, the contractor will bill the entire cost of the roof to the homeowner, regardless of what the insurance agreed to pay, then adjust the cost to the deductible. What results is the insurance company being over billed – and potential insurance fraud.
Contractors can also mess with the numbers. The contractor will give the homeowner the full bill, but when they go to an insurance company, they fudge figures to charge the insurance for the amount reduced from the deductible. This leads to the insurance taking the deductible out a second time. If there comes to be a discrepancy between the bills of the homeowner and the insurance, it can be considered a breach of the insurance policy, and another case of insurance fraud.
Colorado State Law in the SB 38 does give a list of what contractors should include into the contracts. These include:
If you are not sure which licensed roofing contractor to go with, go to the Pikes Peak Regional Building Department (PPRBD) and search for their licensed roofers. Such as the amazing contractors at Colorado’s Roofing Specialist.